Cardinal Pell says Bishop Morris sacking 'a tragedy' but also 'a useful clarification' :: Catholic News Agency (CNA)
“He’s a very good man. He had a lot of pastoral strengths. He’s got a lot of good points. He’s done of lot of good work. He’s got quite a strong following in the diocese.”
“But the diocese was divided quite badly and the bishop hasn’t demonstrated that he’s a team player. I mean even at the end he didn’t wait for the official Vatican announcement.”
“He sent around messages to every parish, to all his priests, the Australian bishops before the official announcement and since then he’s made a number of public announcements which haven’t been helpful.”
As for critics of the Pope’s decision to sack Bishop Morris?
“There’s been a predictable chorus from a minority but such is life.”
The job of rebuilding things in Toowoomba now falls to Bishop Brian Finnegan of Brisbane who has now been appointed apostolic administrator until a new bishop can be found. Cardinal Pell said it’s time “to look to the future.”
“You know, life moves on, but also I think it will be a useful clarification for people that Catholic doctrine is there to be followed and bishops take promises to defend the integrity of Catholic teaching.”
Cardinal Pell believes that it’s this orthodox approach that is reaping apostolic benefits in many parts of Australia including Sydney. He points to an increased number of priestly and religious vocations, vibrant university chaplaincies and the legacy of World Youth Day in 2008.
“Young people don’t see the Catholic Church as being inevitably in decline at least in most parts of Australia.”
“We’re doing what Christ wants, and I think that if you do that you’ve always got to be optimistic”
“There’s life and energy and promise.”